2016 IT preview: What we’re expecting from the biggest players in tech
Will 2016 be the year we see the next industry-changing technology? Even if the next big thing doesn’t come, plenty of new products, improvements, and a few discontinuations are scheduled for the year.
Here’s a sneak peek into what we can expect from the biggest names in tech over the next 12 months.
Adobe Revel will hit its end-of-life on Feb. 23, and it’s being replaced by the Creative Cloud Photography plan. Adobe Flash Professional is being rebranded as Animate CC – it’s more than just a name change, though, and it will include a bevy of additional capabilities and tools. Animate CC will continue to support Flash and AIR formats, which is good news for developers. Adobe is expected roll out Animate CC in early 2016.
Apple is known to be tight-lipped about its new releases, but lately predictions about new iPhone features and software updates have been accurate. On Apple’s schedule is an event in March, which is rumored to introduce the Apple Watch 2 and iPhone 6C that features a 4-inch screen.
Cisco announced Spark in 2015, and this cloud-based offering combines all core collaboration products under a single platform. In practice, this means Apple iOS devices can be registered directly and natively to the Cisco Call Manager for a more seamless integration. Spark is expected to be generally available in either Q1 or Q2.
Dell is releasing new models of its Latitude laptops, equipped with enhanced processors and a slew of other upgrades, throughout the year. Dell’s tablet, Venue 11 Pro, has gotten a makeover and has been renamed the Latitude 11 5000 series; it will run Windows 10 and will be available at the end of January.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) will shut down Helion, its public cloud, on Jan. 31, and shift focus to its private and hybrid cloud business. The company recently launched the HPE Helion Managed Cloud Broker, a service that helps companies control and monitor services across multiple cloud providers.
HP Inc. has joined the 2-in-1 movement with its new Elite x2 laptop/tablet hybrid. This business-friendly tablet/laptop comes complete with a stylus and stand. It’s available for pre-order, and will ship in mid-January.
A line of 3D printers is scheduled for release toward the end of 2016 (likely in October or November), but specific dates haven’t been released yet. Additionally, a new OfficeJet model, slated for a spring release, will feature PageWide printing technology.
IBM is the forerunner in the Internet of Things, and solidified its position at the top with the purchase of Weather.com and other digital assets of The Weather Company, as well as its partnerships with Verizon and Apple; big data and analytics will be accessible on Apple devices soon.
Lenovo’s product roadmap for 2016 indicates a lot of new releases are on the way. The most important launch is Lenovo X1, an enterprise tablet with a 12-inch display, which is set to be unveiled in February.
Microsoft is expected to release a Surface phone in Q2 to pair with the Surface Book. Though an official release date hasn’t been set, we know the smartphone will run Windows 10 and boast a 5.7-inch full HD display.
On the enterprise side, Microsoft is retiring its Office 365 service plan, E4 on June 30. Additionally, a new version of Dynamics AX, the enterprise resource planning software, is slated for release during the first quarter of 2016.
Oracle will expand its Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) portfolio throughout 2016 (though release dates for many offerings are still unknown). Its Compute Cloud, announced at Open World in October 2015, will debut sometime in 2016.
Pure Storage’s aim for this year is to simplify storage ownership with the introduction of Pure1 Global Insight, new 3D TLC NAND flash technology, and the FlashStack Converged Infrastructure. The 3D TLC expansion shelf will be available in Q1.
Like Apple, details about new Samsung releases are now harder to come by. The company’s tight-lipped about its plans for the enterprise channel in 2016, but we do know that several new Samsung smartphones will be released, including the Galaxy S7 and a new line of phones called Galaxy A.
What’s new for 2016? Customers can now order Endpoint Suite with or without email protection. This announcement came in late December, but according to our internal sources, it set the stage for Symantec to offer customers more options and add-ons in 2016.
vCloud Air Network, VMware’s unified hybrid cloud platform, will partner with Google Cloud DNS to offer organizations “globally distributed, low latency DNS service with high availability and scalability as well as ease of manageability.” This unified offering is expected to be available in the first half of the year. Also, expanded support for vSphere Integrated Containers on VMware vCloud Air is anticipated for some time in the New Year.
Stay tuned to The SHI Blog throughout 2016 for more information about how to incorporate these and more changes into your IT environment.